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DHEA Blood Testing or Saliva Testing?
Over the past 20-30 years numerous research studies have validated the use of saliva as a diagnostic medium to measure the biologically active fraction of steroid hormones in the bloodstream.
Saliva is an excellent medium to measure steroids because it is a natural ultrafiltrate of blood, and steroids not bound by carrier proteins in the blood freely diffuse into saliva.
Only about 1-10% of the steroids in blood are in the unbound or free form, and it is this fraction that diffuses into target tissues of the body, and into saliva.
The majority (90-99%) of steroid hormones in the blood are bound to carrier proteins (cortisol binding globulin, sex-hormone binding globulin and albumin) and are unavailable to target tissues.
The steroid hormones that have been studied most extensively in saliva include estrogens (estradiol, estrone, and estriol), progesterone, androgens (DHEA, testosterone), and cortisol.
Most standard blood tests do not measure bioavailable hormone levels, and the best way to do this is through saliva testing.
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